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Editorial Entertainment Games

Dvorak Trashes Modern Gaming Industry 792

Posted by Zonk
from the because-he's-an-expert dept.
oskard writes "John C. Dvorak recently posted a PCMag.com rant trashing the gaming industry, predicting a complete market-meltdown in the near future. Titled 'Doom 4: End of the Game Industry?', it was interesting to see how the 3D Realms Forums reacted to the article. He claims that 'games have hardly changed since the invention of the first-person shooter.' His kids have obviously showed him too much Halo 2, and not enough Half-Life 2." From the article: "The business is going to attempt to sustain growth and creativity by making game players buy newer and newer machines. Computer gaming has always been sustained by never-ending improvements in resolution and realism. But once we get to photorealism, what is going to sustain growth?"
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Dvorak Trashes Modern Gaming Industry

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  • He's off the mark. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ckwop (707653) * <Simon.Johnson@gmail.com> on Friday April 29, 2005 @08:55AM (#12382222) Homepage

    Guru meditition Error: "An instance of professor could not be loaded due to a missing a critical library: empathy.lib."

    Seriously, I could have applied that analysis to the the media of any century. People could have said that about art in the 16th century, literature in the 19th century and television in the 20th century. Now it's the turn of the new fangled 21st century media, the video game, to be label as "boring and non-progressive".

    Wake up and smell the roses. In this world you don't have to be original to make money. If anything, you are penalised for creating something original; daring to be different is often suicidal. This problem is even more accute in the software industry where it can cost a lot more to produce a game that it does a crappy sit-com.

    People like their media a lot like they like their sex: Non-adventurous but guarenteed to satisfy. (As a side note, slashdotters might disagree that people want "boring" sex I think the reality is that most people grandstand on this issue; I'd wager that the majority of people feel comfortable having relativity boring sex).

    Don't be fooled by Dvorak, the gaming industry is unlikely to implode. It just means that we'll appreciate the ground-breaking games more when they arrive.

    Simon.

    • Wait a minute! Slashdotters? Sex?
    • by 22RealMcCoy (864375) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:05AM (#12382327)
      Huge opportunities will abound in the gaming industry as tools are released that lets the global community mod their favorite games. Storytelling will come to dominate games at every turn, as graphics, physics engines, and audio approach reality. The stories will also need to approach reality. http://autumnrangersgame.com/ [autumnrangersgame.com] is an example, based on the novel http://autumnrangersnovel.com/ [autumnrangersnovel.com] and movie http://autumnrangersmovie.com./ [autumnrangersmovie.com.]
      • Huge opportunities will abound in the gaming industry as tools are released that lets the global community mod their favorite games. Storytelling will come to dominate games at every turn, as graphics, physics engines, and audio approach reality.

        Mods are cool, but they generally fail to tell a compelling, cinematic story.

        - Mod teams can't afford professional voice actors, so until voice synthesis technology advances a few light years that will heavily detract from the immersion.

        - Mod teams don't have 8-
    • by ajs (35943) <ajs AT ajs DOT com> on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:09AM (#12382378) Homepage Journal
      Ob Geek Dig: "As a side note, slashdotters might disagree that people want "boring" sex I think the reality is that most people grandstand on this issue; I'd wager that the majority of people feel comfortable having relativity boring sex"

      I think most Slashdotters would feel comfortable having sex... "realtively boring" or not. ;-)

      As for the article, I agree with him in part. The industry is starting to show its age, and the "blockbuster" has arived. This does NOT mean that good games with innovative concepts are gone, it just means that the really good an creative ones don't have the financial backing any more. Look for the games that don't quite have the best graphics (can't afford a team of artists), and aren't for sale in the mall stores (probably online only) to be the next wave of innovative games.

      Of course, Doom was only for sale online, and it was astoundingly innovative, so not a LOT has changed.
    • by Phisbut (761268) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:23AM (#12382533)
      Wake up and smell the roses. In this world you don't have to be original to make money. If anything, you are penalised for creating something original; daring to be different is often suicidal.

      That is unfortunately why Nintendo has a hard time these days. They are actually trying to innovate and "revolutionize" gaming, which should theorically be a good thing, but just like you said, people don't like what is innovative...

      • by glenrm (640773) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:03AM (#12382909) Homepage Journal
        Speak for yourself I can't get enough Donkey Konga!
      • by samael (12612) <Andrew@Ducker.org.uk> on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:04AM (#12382929) Homepage
        Why should revolution be a good thing?

        Finding new _good_ ideas is a good thing. Using current _good_ ideas is a good thing.

        Sure, feel free to try new things, but if you aren't producing something better than the current ideas then don't expect people to flock to you just because your idea is new.
      • by clontzman (325677)
        That is unfortunately why Nintendo has a hard time these days. They are actually trying to innovate and "revolutionize" gaming, which should theorically be a good thing, but just like you said, people don't like what is innovative...

        I always ask this when it comes up, but I never get much of an answer. What has Nintendo done this generation that's particularly innovative? I think that Sony's work with the EyeToy or Microsoft's Xbox Live infrastructure has had much more of an impact than anything Nintendo'
      • by King_TJ (85913) on Friday April 29, 2005 @02:40PM (#12386233) Journal
        I'm not a huge "console gamer" to begin with, so maybe this should be taken with a helping of salt... But my experiences have been, Nintendo is focused pretty sharply on the younger gamers out there. Being a "30 something" myself, Nintendo has no real charm for me. I think of GameCube as something my daughter might enjoy playing with in a few more years.

        Whether they're especially "innovative" or not, I think it's all being lost on their target market. Younger kids tend to be happy with even the "been done a million times already" titles, because they're not old enough to remember playing the originals they're based on.
    • exactly (Score:5, Insightful)

      by sammy baby (14909) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:26AM (#12383182) Journal
      Seriously, I could have applied that analysis to the the media of any century. People could have said that about art in the 16th century, literature in the 19th century and television in the 20th century.

      These two sentences precisely nail exactly what is wrong with Dvorak's article. For example:

      I can't see how people will keep shelling out $50 or so for a video game when the games have hardly changed since the invention of the first-person shooter... The categories are shooters, puzzles and mazes, adventure games, sports games, and simulations. That's it. Most of today's hottest games are combinations of two or three of these categories, with a storyline added to keep the players from being bored stiff. - Dvorak
      I can't see how people will keep turning on their televisions at night when the shows have hardly changed since the invention of the television. The categories are: sitcoms, hospital dramas, cop dramas, and sports. Most of today's hottest shows are combinations of two or three of these categories, with a sex scene added to keep the viewers from being bored stiff. - AlternaDvorak

      In fact, I'd go so far as to say that this is MORE true of television than video games. But I'm a curmudgeon.

    • by Dogtanian (588974) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:45AM (#12383400) Homepage
      Don't be fooled by Dvorak, the gaming industry is unlikely to implode. It just means that we'll appreciate the ground-breaking games more when they arrive.

      Actually, I'd expected the gist of it to be that the gaming industry was going to die because of the economics of it; namely the "feast and famine" nature that sees companies having massive hits, then going to the wall because they can't get funding for the next big-budget blockbuster.

      That's as good a reason as any to avoid the games industry like the plague, as far as I'm concerned. That and the fact that it looks interesting from the outside (and thus attracts high numbers of applicants), but actually pushes its participants (or at least the programmers and testers) notoriously hard- doubly so when launch-time approaches- and gives them precious little creativity.
    • by BaudKarma (868193) on Friday April 29, 2005 @12:52PM (#12384966) Journal
      In other news, I've decided that since motion pictures are in color now, and they have sound, the movie industry is on its last legs. I mean seriously, there's not much technological innovation any more. Movies made five or ten years ago still look pretty good. Movie plots these days are all derivitive... it's a horror movie, or a romantic comedy, or an action-adventure.

      All this considered, the movie industry should have imploded long ago.
  • by AAeyers (857625) on Friday April 29, 2005 @08:56AM (#12382229) Journal
    Now that Dvorak said its dying, sales will sky rocket and Duke Nukem Forever will be released ahead of schedule.
  • I happen to agree (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mfh (56) on Friday April 29, 2005 @08:59AM (#12382250) Journal
    I agree with him. The other day I went to Future Shop to buy a game or just browse and I walked by every title thinking how uncreative the games industry has become. I don't pay for copycat games.

    Make something original.
  • Don't fall for it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bigtallmofo (695287) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:01AM (#12382267)
    Dvorak does this all the time to increase page impressions. Don't even bother reading the article.

    It's obvious to me that the opposite is occurring. It appears that people are becoming more and more addicted (or "drawn to" if you prefer a less inflamatory term) to video games as they become more interactive and realistic.
    • by Kombat (93720) <kombat@kombat.org> on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:28AM (#12382566) Homepage
      It appears that people are becoming more and more addicted (or "drawn to" if you prefer a less inflamatory term) to video games as they become more interactive and realistic.

      I wouldn't be so quick to draw such a "cause-and-effect." I actually think that the ever-increasing realism of some particular genres will work against the games. I mean, Mortal Kombat was fun when you could rip the loser's spine from his body, and it was obviously fake blood and gore. But what will happen when it actually looks like footage of a real man, actually ripping out another man's real spine? Of course, it will still just be a simulation, but is society ready for a generation of kids who literally can't tell reality from fantasy?

      It's (relatively) easy to distance yourself from video game violence when it is so obviously CG, but technology will eventually approach the point where the video will achieve startling realism. What will that do to the kids who've grown up playing these games, and who have a pretty good idea of what an actual gunshot wound looks like? People complain that kids are desensitized to violence by today's video games, but as realistic as they are, no one would ever confuse them with actual video footage of an actual murder. What sort of desensitization effect will games have when they become indistinguishable from video of actual violent acts? Will the desensitization effect rise to a new level? Are we ready for the potential implications?

      Or will game makers simply shy away from the truly graphic, photorealistic violence, and save such abilities for ever more realistic non-violent games, like racing or flying simulations? Then again, maybe a photorealistic "Flight Simulator 2010" is just what Al Queda needs to properly train for their next mission?

      Food for thought.
      • by XO (250276)
        bzzzt, wrong! people think that deaths and gunshots and things look as sanitized as they do on tv. A little more realism, I think, might be a GOOD thing.
        • bzzzt, wrong! people think that deaths and gunshots and things look as sanitized as they do on tv. A little more realism, I think, might be a GOOD thing.

          Hate to break it to you, but real gunshots are usually not as gory as Hollywood's depiction, which isn't to say that reality can't be horribly gory and disturbing. IMO, the most disturbing part about violence for me is the real human suffering and senseless insanity rather than the actual blood and mutilation.

          I would think most doctors would agree
      • by rhkaloge (208983)
        I don't think photorealism is the end all of graphics design. I look at animation and specificly CG, an industry that has been headed toward photorealism for decades. What do you have when you have a totally photorealistic animated movie? You have a regular movie. Works like The Incredibles are what animation is headed for - still the goofy looking cartoon characters, but put into more real and fluid situations. Same will be true for video games.

        Skippy
      • by pilgrim23 (716938) on Friday April 29, 2005 @01:57PM (#12385726)
        Back in the pre-CG days of the 1930s, Warner Brothers was constantly fielding complaints over the level of violence Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig Daffy Duck and the immortal (Lucky for him) Elmer Fudd were constantly portraying. After all: Seeing Bugs put a finger in Elmer's hunting rifle and having it blow up on Elmer with the only result being soot on face, a flower petal looking gun barrel and no problem for Bug's finger was only encouraging our youth to take similar actions...
        As the saying goes: Nothing new here, move on.
      • by dbIII (701233)

        It's (relatively) easy to distance yourself from video game violence when it is so obviously CG, but technology will eventually approach the point where the video will achieve startling realism

        Then it will be easy to distance yourself from the violence becuase it's just on the screen - people do that with movies all the time.

        Then again, maybe a photorealistic "Flight Simulator 2010" is just what Al Queda needs to properly train for their next mission?

        This sort of argument creeps into discussions on al

      • by StikyPad (445176)
        They said the same thing back when video games made the transition from blocky nondescript characters to higher resolution graphics where people could be identified as such, and you could add things like blood. They said the same thing about books, porn, comics, cartoons, any any other form of entertainment you can imagine. As you can see, we're still here.
    • Just because the messenger is suspect doesn't meant that the message isn't true.

      In this case the raw facts are pretty accurate, despite the message being sensationalized unnecessarily. Once photorealism and realistic movement are achieved, what then? The current driving forces for new purchases will then disappear, so ability to innovate not technically but in game themes and in storytelling and in player interation will become the new frontier.

      Yet, there is no sign that the current game blockbuster ind
    • Food for thought (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Moraelin (679338)
      Morgaine already said it well enough, but let me throw my own details at why it's a problem.

      The thing is relying _only_ on better graphics has worked well enough to motivate people to buy this year's 10,000 polygon game for $40 instead of last year's 5,000 polygon game for $10, or the game from 2-3 years ago for $3.

      The way it works is that it creates an artiffically low supply, helping keep prices up. There are only so many games available which are up to this year's standards. It helps keep a certain rat
      • Re:Food for thought (Score:4, Informative)

        by espressojim (224775) <eris@NOsPam.tarogue.net> on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:53AM (#12383506)
        And then, you can work on realistic physics, and AI. After that, you can work on better stories, non-linear plots, etc.

        There's a million directions that technologies can improve in for games. I don't see the world ending when graphics get to be photorealisitc (and that's not going to happen any time soon anyway - compare Pixar level graphics to today's PC, we're many years away from having the processor power to do that in realtime.)
    • by quakeroatz (242632) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:14AM (#12383030) Journal
      So true.

      Don't tell me that 70,000 people we're playing Counter Strike on the crusty old Half LIfe 1 engine because of the graphics. Gameplay sustains a game's life after the initial buzz, look what happened to Doom 3, all flash no substance. And on the other hand you have Gameboy's Tetris, what a graphical nightmare, but still a strong classic few didn't enjoy for a long time.
    • This is maybe the tenth time I've read a story posted here in which Dvorak's name appears in the headline. My reaction, upon consideration, has always been the same:

      Where oh where is the option for us to mod articles themselves? I really, really need to peg Dvorak with a "troll -1" mod.

      There are "contrarian view" columnists like this in every industry, meant to get our ire up, but few of those are so blatant (and so blatantly wrong) for so bloody long.

  • by utexaspunk (527541) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:01AM (#12382269)
    Games suck these days, with few exceptions every game is just a variant of one of a few formulas- FPS's, RPG's, RTS's, Sports games, Racing games, and a couple of basic puzzle formulas. I don't think the game market's about to implode or anything, but it's been a long time since a wholly original game has come out. Need more Katamari Damacy, less run-around-and-shoot-crap games...
    • You and maybe 50k other people bought that game. Doom3 ,which is usually used by retro-grouch curmudgeons such as yourself as an example for flash without substance, will sell a million+. Splinter Cell 3, million +, GTA:San Andreas, 10 million +, HL2, million +. See a pattern? Sequels sell lots. Publishers and studios choosing between having a money in the bank franchise or throwing money at a speculative IP that might not take... Why bother? People don't want original game play, they want what they already
  • by bigmouth_strikes (224629) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:01AM (#12382271) Journal
    Can we get a Dvorak topic that we can ignore, please?

    John Dvorak writes for the average WinTel user who isn't following tech trends more than what makes the evening news. I can't understand how anything he writes is of any interest to /.ers., really.
  • The UT series (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Martz (861209)

    For example: Unreal Tournament series has peaked in my opinion, the systematic annual release of UT 200x titles is starting to wear very thin, and the quality of the work and time going into the games seems to be declining.

    I don't think the communities which build around playing these game titles are able to stay up to date with the releases. By the time you have bought the game, created a clan and joined a league or ladder, the next version of the game is out and you are simply supposed to discard it an

  • short sighted (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Ubergrendle (531719) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:02AM (#12382279) Journal
    FPSes have the best visual 'eye candy', but I could have said the same in the 1980s about Flight Sims. Innovative fun games continue to be invented and create their own niches.

    In the past few years, there's been some great advancements... Europa Univeralis 2 is probably the most intricate historically based strategy game ever invented (and yet doesn't become a micromanagement nightmare).... how would you qualify "The Sims" as a game based on 1980s or 1990s definitions? Sounds like a dumb premise but its been hugely popular (and inventive). I'm not a big fan of MMORPG but it is definitely an advancement in the realm of CRPGs. And Doom3 is just an eye-candy FPS, as the article poster pointed out he should be trying Half Life 2 or KOTOR.

    He's probably indirectly commenting on the slowing pace of 'genre' creation...most of the new games fit into a specific model/theme. This is where consumers have spoken. Tetris is probably one of the most addictive and popular games of all time, but if it was invented today no one would pay $50.00 for it.
    • Tetris is probably one of the most addictive and popular games of all time, but if it was invented today no one would pay $50.00 for it.

      Let's bear one very important thing in mind about Tetris. There was nothing really "state of the art" about it when it first appeared in the mid-late 1980s.

      Put simply, if you ignore the pretty-but-unimportant backgrounds/pictures, etc., you could write Tetris for the Atari 2600 or the Sinclair ZX81 without any change in the gameplay. In short, if you asked someone with
  • by StuartFreeman (624419) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:03AM (#12382294) Homepage
    I think of first person shooters as sort of the "silent movies" of video games. We are at the stage of developing the technology to create truely deep games. The FPS is an excellent platform for testing out new technology (see the newest Unreal engine for reference). Once the FPS proves a technology feasible it can be adopted into games of larger scale; and once we reach a plateau in the realism that can be delivered by games, developers will have to innovate gameplay around that realism.
    • Some interesting models for where the game industry should be heading are the virtual worlds of Neil Stephenson's Snowcrash or Diamond Age.

      The objective is to create virtual worlds that are so compelling and rich that people will leave the real world for them. It already happens to an extent with games like WoW and EQ, but hey unfortunately quickly devolve in to repetitive, pointless grinds with no real point, they are atrocious time sinks. But there is still interest and color from two directions, inter
  • by Moby Cock (771358) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:04AM (#12382300) Homepage
    But once we get to photorealism, what is going to sustain growth?

    I don't play games because of the graphics. I play games because they are fun. Agreed a fun game that looks great is better than one that looks like crap, however photorealism is not the end state of gaming progression. Look at all the fun people have with games like Bejeweled. That has nothing to do with visuals. Its just a fun game to play. All these first person shooters are featuring graphics because that is what will set them apart. It is tought to build an engaging story that has to involve thousands of monsters to be slaughtered. FPS games are going to decline to a niche, but games are going to persist.

    This guy is just being inflammatory for the sake of it.
    • I don't play games because of the graphics.

      You are right, even though its graphics and structure are much more primitive, I actually enjoyed playing the Marathon series of games more than, say, Half-Life 2. (FYI, Marathon, originally a Mac game, can now be played through the open source Aleph One [bungie.org] project, and can be downloaded for free at Bungie's [bungie.org] site.) Marathon had a storyline which was a few factors more complex than HL2's, but it was woven inobtrusively into the gameplay through interactive termina


    • I already have a plug for one of these games in my sig. PuzzlePirates is really an MMORPG where level of firepower is not the measure of a good player. The environment isn't hostile, it really is fun for people of all ages. The graphics are pretty, but they're not super grotesque mega-3d intensive requiring a $4,000 machine.

      Perhaps even more importantly, you don't have to play every moment of every day to be a good player. Much of it has to do with the community (which is stellar), and you won't be tra
  • Starship Troopers (Score:3, Informative)

    by alnya (513364) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:04AM (#12382303)
    If you want to see exactly how inane this is, go out and rent the brain-dead Paul Verhoeven film, Starship Troopers.

    Poor use of an example there, being that Starship Troopers [imdb.com] is a oft-misunderstood anti-war satire.

    Mod article +5 Ironic
  • by purduephotog (218304) <{hirsch} {at} {inorbit.com}> on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:04AM (#12382306) Homepage Journal
    Kings Quest Fun plot, lots of actions, and the graphics sucked. But that didn't stop it from being a blast to play (remember if you didn't have the sugar cube to get thru the poison brambles...)

    Anyways, theres always decent story lines, multiple realms, etc. Thats why I always enjoyed Muds (MortalRealms) because of the varied areas and the fact that new ones were always being brought online. I realize that most games can not afford to be updated to this extent (text vs complex 3d models) but still... if I wanted a photo realistic game with pain feed-back, I'd join paintball.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:04AM (#12382307)
    As usual, he's so fixated on his own navel that he's missing the point entirely...!


    see, what he's really saying is that *he's* bored with the stuff the gaming industry is putting out there; therefore, the industry just *must* be on the verge of imploding, right?


    what he's forgetting is that the gaming industry's target audience isn't self-important middle-aged white men. a demographic that's closer to the mark is kids and teens. *they're* the ones who are providing the main revenue stream for the industry, and, not too coincidentally, *they're* the ones impressed by the fancy flashing lights.


    all of the "it's all the same thing" rant is lost on this audience: they haven't been around long enough to know that it's all the same thing, wrapped up in new, shiny paper, and using faster processors and cards. to them, old *is* new again, and it's pretty freaking impressive!


    I don't mean this in a disparaging way; I'm just saying that you don't get that kind of perspective about the gaming industry until, very likely, you're no longer part of their target demographic...

    • Re:Statistics (Score:3, Insightful)

      by symbolic (11752)
      e isn't self-important middle-aged white men. a demographic that's closer to the mark is kids and teens. *they're* the ones who are providing the main revenue stream for the industry

      I remember reading statistics once that surprised me...the gist of it was that there are far more "older" gamers than people realize, and that the teen market doesn't even make up the majority. Still, I'm inclined to agree with the idea that he's projecting his own dissatisfaction onto entire gaming audience.
    • "what he's forgetting is that the gaming industry's target audience isn't self-important middle-aged white men. a demographic that's closer to the mark is kids and teens. *they're* the ones who are providing the main revenue stream for the industry, and, not too coincidentally, *they're* the ones impressed by the fancy flashing lights."

      The people buying and playing console and PC games are older than that. A study commisioned by the Interactive Digital Software Association shows that 96 percent of PC game
  • too much Halo??? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Jonas the Bold (701271) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:05AM (#12382312)
    Um, I think halo is a bad example of "just another shooter". It really isn't just another action game. It has a number of inovations that give a lot of depth to gameplay.

    Health/shields - recharging shields after a few seconds, so you never have to limp around almost dead, team mates can cover you while you recharge for team strategy, etc

    Vehicles - the way you can just get in and get out at will

    Carrying only two weapons at a time, forces you to choose, not just load up

    Melee attacks - always available and make close combat much more interesting

    Grenades - always available at a button press (not a weapon you switch to) and add lots of strategy, such as bouncing htem around corners, laying them in front of doors enemies are following you through, etc

    Plasma / particle weapons - plasma hurts shields more, particle hurts health more, makes weapon combos more interesting

    Motion tracker - Not a radar, you can only see people who are moving, so not moving is a strategic option, crouch walking is slow but you don't show up on motion trackers, so it adds a level of stealth to an action game

    Granted, these are all halo 1 inovations, but the balance of all these things in halo 2 is superb. They all come up constantly. I think a better example of a boring by the numbers game is Doom 3.
    • Ok ok, a lot of these things aren't exactly new, but they way they're implemented or used together in the game give it depth and is definately innovative.

      Melee attacks, for instance, are in pretty much all action games/shooters, but they're usually like the fallback knife or fists in other shooters. They're used instead of guns, not in conjuntion with.

      The same is true of grenades - definately not new in a game, but in halo the left trigger is your gun and the right is the grenade. Again, used in conjuncti
    • Re:too much Halo??? (Score:3, Informative)

      by drinkypoo (153816)

      None of these things are halo 1 innovations. They have all been done (with the possible exception of auto-recharging shields - but there CERTAINLY have been shields) in prior FPS games. Mods for half-life included vehicles you can get in and out of before halo came arouund. Melee attacks have been around since doom or so. Nades have also been around for ages, though not sticky ones. Motion trackers are definitely old.

      This is not insightful. Halo is just another FPS. I'm sorry if it's your favorite game

  • Quake Family Tree. (Score:3, Informative)

    by Tei (520358) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:05AM (#12382326) Journal
    Anyone interested on modern FPS engines sould check this Quake Family Tree [quakesrc.org].

    This pict how actually most people its on modding already existing engines. Valve its even forward, modding his how mods ( Counter Strike: Source ). /me...Looking forward for Quake 4.
  • Who cares about first person shooters, they're probably the most uncreative genre of computer games anyway.
    The gaming industry being uncreative is old news, it was already uncreative as hell when 486 hit the shelf for god's sake, and 95% of the "gamerz" populations ain't asking for creativity anyway, they care for l33t FPS, l33t v3rt3x & sh4d3rz, they don't ask for gameplay they care for graphics, they don't want scenario they want T&L. In a word, they care for useless shit.
    Try giving them Coloniz
  • by EvilTwinSkippy (112490) <yodaNO@SPAMetoyoc.com> on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:07AM (#12382348) Homepage Journal
    He does an excellent job of explaining what we already know. The diversity in gaming could fit in a matchbox with room to spare.

    What he doesn't explore is why. A distribution channel that favors "safe bets" over radical new concepts. Kinda like the movie industry, cranking out sequel after sequel of the same cliche'd genres.

  • Halo Half Life (Score:2, Insightful)

    by northcat (827059)
    His kids have obviously showed him too much Halo 2, and not enough Half-Life 2.

    So how is Half-Life 2 extremely different from Halo 2? They're both just FPS with good graphics. There's a guy standing, holding a weapon, geometrically everything seems like any other game and he shoot other things/people. Maybe he gets on some vehicle. That's exactly Dvorak's point. All we see each year are the same games (or same type of games) with improved graphics. In the past each game used to be wildly different from
  • I got about as far as ...

    The categories are shooters, puzzles and mazes, adventure games, sports games, and simulations. That's it. Most of today's hottest games are combinations of two or three of these categories, with a storyline added to keep the players from being bored stiff. When my kids show me a game, I usually say that it's nothing but the same old running-jumping-kicking-shooting with a new background. They leave in a huff.


    Sounds like novels and movies to me. There's what, adventures, documentary, sci-fi, romance, a few others. Books haven't had any real new ideas except a tacked on story line to keep the reader from being bored stiff.

    I hate to break it to Dvorak, but gaming isn't always about something new and creative. In fact, new and creative can be very hard to enjoy for a gamer who's used to certain types of games (go read all the "why isn't it more like /x/" messages on the boards).

    A good story will get me through a really stupid game any day of the week, like a page turner with a great plot and terrible spelling because the writer didn't get a good editor.

    I actually am one of those people who quite enjoyed Doom 3, not for the incredible graphics or sound effects, but because it had an intriguing plot line. I'm not saying it was as well fleshed-out as it could have been. I'm not going to refer anyone to the hundreds of people who didn't bother watching any of the video discs in the game or reading the E-mails, they're easy to find too.

    There are many types of gamer -- some like newspapers, some like comic books, some like 2000 page novels, some like to reread their favorite magazine fifteen times. The gaming industry isn't dying.
  • HL2 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DrXym (126579) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:11AM (#12382404)
    Certainly Half Life 2 is a step above the standard FPS fare, and has some great graphics, but it still very much suffers from the same faults as many FPS games - linear game play, scripted events, levels that box you in, zombies, stupid AI, health meters, a standard range of weapons etc. Its not that much different from most other FPS games in that way.


    With that said, the cut-scene engine is excellent, the production is good, there's a semi-coherent plot and the gravity gun is a lot of fun. It's certainly a hell of a lot better than the invisible rail shitfest that is Doom 3, that's for sure.

  • by Anita Coney (648748) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:14AM (#12382435) Homepage
    Showing him Half-Life 2 wouldn't help. Dvorak's problem is that he openly admits he does NOT game. Thus he's like the old guy who thinks all rock and roll sounds the same. Or the young guy who thinks all jazz sounds the same.

    It's hard to understand the nuisances of a subculture unless you particulate in it yourself.
  • CONTENT! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TrippTDF (513419) <hiland@@@gmail...com> on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:17AM (#12382471)
    But once we get to photorealism, what is going to sustain growth?

    The content! the story! how has hollywood sustained after achiving photorealistic CGI? Using it in interesting ways! Creating stories that people love.

    Photorealism will just be polishing a tool. It will be up to creative people to sustain the growth of the games industry. Games are now a (highly technical) art form. Did people stop doing interesting things with painting after the Mona Lisa? No. This is just the begining of the game industry, not the end.
  • Photorealism? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Jameth (664111) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:19AM (#12382482)
    Half of the games out there intentionally avoid realistic graphics. Instead, they have cartoony, silly graphics. They make graphics that actually work for the game. And, guess what, they're quite successful.
  • by Skye16 (685048) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:24AM (#12382536)
    "But once we get to photorealism, what is going to sustain growth?"
    Engaging gameplay? Over the last few years, as games get more and more graphic intensive, the actual gameplay has suffered drastically. One of the reasons WoW has been so popular is that they didn't kill themselves making the greatest MMO game engine known to mankind, but instead worried about the look and feel and quality of gameplay. I had more fun playing Super Mario Brothers 3 than I have almost any recent game. The recent games have had wonderful graphics, and they've been fun for a bit, but they don't sink their claws into you and never let go. Counter-Strike, one of the most popular games to date, was built on an engine that came out in 1997 or 1998 or something. They didn't worry about graphics so much. They worried about addictive, engaging gameplay. As much as I hate all the 12 year old kiddies running around spamming "OMFG FAGGET AWP WHORE!!1111", I have to admit that the game, itself, is compelling.

    With the possible exception of Battlefield 1942, I haven't seen a FPS game since that has held my attention for more than 2 weeks (and I tend to spend upwards of 100$ a month on video games). Everything has been a disappointment to me, and most other people I've spoken to, lately.

    There's going to come a point where photorealism is going to be common place, and eventually easy to develop. After that, the developers will be able to get back to the old Arcade style roots - good, solid games with good, solid ideas. They'll worry about story, look and feel, and some new, compelling quirks that grab the players attention. The video game industry isn't going to die. It isn't going to be crippled. Once photorealism is common place, the developers will come back from the jackass side of the game development force and focus on gameplay. Then everyone will be happy, and I'll stop feeling bad about shelling out mass quantities of money for new games.
  • by GodBlessTexas (737029) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:26AM (#12382550) Journal
    The gaming industry is getting stale. The FPS was a revolution in gaming with the original Wolfenstein, but even that was only an offshoot of the Contra/Commander Keen style side scrolling shooter. It only changed the perspective and gave the gameplay some added depth, but thats it. OpenGL was another technology that revolutionized games, but it only made them look better and allowed for added depth and realism. The type of profound advancements that we've seen in gaming since Pong are going to become less and less. There really aren't any more distinct categories/genres of games that can be created. What we'll see is that advances in technology allow the games to look more realistic, the AI will continue to improve, and new features will be added that make things interesting. And let's not forget that ultimately, there are some games out there with really great stories! Half-Life changed the way people look at FPS games because it had an interesting story. It wasn't just run and gun. But, the industry is still being driven by how realistic the scenery and the killing is in the game. I doubt we'll have true photorealism any time soon, so that's enough to sustain the industry for a while. Hell, someone needs to get Dvorak a copy of Final Fantasy X. Say what you want about consoles and games being dead, but that RPG had one of the best stories of any game I've ever seen. My wife and kids actually enjoyed watching me play it. It's going to be games like that, where we see sort of a merge of gameplay and movie/story like entertainment that will continue to succeed.
  • by DrWhizBang (5333) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:31AM (#12382596) Homepage Journal
    Although Dvorak is wrong about a "collapse" of the gaming industry, he is right that there is a fundamental change brewing. What he doesn't get is that this change is not just taking place in the gaming industry, but in the movie industry. Technology has reached a point where we can tell any story we want, in any way we want, effortlessly. There is no visual experience we cannot simulate cinematically (did I just make up a word?)

    As the realtime visualization of a video game catches up with the pre-rendered illusion of film, the video game industry will end up having to solve some of the same problems that the movie industry is now starting to face: special effects are no longer enough. We take them for granted. Film-makers are now trying to catch our attention in other ways - mostly by remaking old stories or producing sequels. That will get old soon, and when it does there will be a new breed of films that reach people more deeply, challenge their emotions and intellect. We are seeing a smattering of this now, but not in force.

    For game-makers, the challenge will be to use their newly available photo-realistic engines ot produce a challenging game. Currently, game companies are development shops - but soon the development will be complete and the art will take over.

    I am looking forward to this - maybe I will start to play games again. But currently I am like Dvorak - I have seen too many versions of Quake, and I am not interested in memorizing the correct sequence of keypresses to fire the Super-Duper-Cannon in order to beat the boss on level 17. Great games have a low barrier of entry and are immersive. Think Tetris, and Bejewelled, but also think Doom or Half-Life.
  • by Shaper_pmp (825142) on Friday April 29, 2005 @09:55AM (#12382844)
    I call BS on this whole article. It's exactly the kind of thing I hear (with minor variations) from anyone who's not into computer gaming, especially those too old to have started as kids.

    "Am I the only one who expects a collapse of the gaming business soon? Does anyone else think that it is overdue? It has happened before,"

    When, exactly? When was computer gaming ever as big as it is now, and when did it subsequently collapse? And even if it did, the fact that it's back and as big as it is now downgrades that from a "collapse" to a "temporary dip".

    "and I can't see how people will keep shelling out $50 or so for a video game when the games have hardly changed since the invention of the first-person shooter."

    So when did that ever matter? There are about five-ten genres of games, and there are already one or more examples which are considered pretty definitive, or were at the time (shooters = Half-Life 2, RTS = Dune/C&C/Total Annihilation, Point-and-Click Adventure = Sam&Max/Curse of Monkey Island, etc).

    Having these definitive games around didn't stop people producing new (and better/more complex/more involving) ones, did it? The point is the differences between the games, not the similarities.

    And ok, $50 is a lot for a game, and we'd all like it if it was cheaper. But you'll pay $15 for a DVD, and that lasts a tiny fraction of the time a good game does.

    "I complain to my kids about this, and they insist that things have changed markedly. They show me examples, and all I see are tweaks and weirder, mostly stupid weapons."

    Yeah. But what they're showing you is new gameplay dynamics, improved graphics, better immersion and a more engaging storyline, you inattentive and obdurate prat.

    "There are four or five simple game categories and nothing really new or different."

    Ignoring the conservative "genre" number... Yeah, and before Dune/C&C there would have been four game categories, until someone invented one. But you can't do that forever - at some point someone will have tried every game-style worth playing, and the only thing to do is to make them technically better, and more involving.

    Let's face it - as Aristotle thought, practically every movie can be broken down into the basic "initial balance/disruption of balance/re-establishment of balance" structure. Does this mean that every movie is the same? So should the movie industry collapse? No, because what's important is not the details of how you interact with the film, but the story the film tells.

    Likewise, computer gaming is moving away from frantic innovation in how you interact with the game, more towards cinematic, immersive stories. That's evolution, not death.

    "When my kids show me a game, I usually say that it's nothing but the same old running-jumping-kicking-shooting with a new background."

    Bingo - that's because you're old, out-of-touch and writing an article on something about which you know nothing. Show me a Bollywood movie and all I see is a lot of silly dancing-annoying music-cheesy-plot twists with new costumes, but I don't assume that the entire Bollywood movie industry is without artistic merit and destined to die on its arse. That's because I don't have my head jammed up my arse, and don't assume that "I don't understand" = "Contains no merit whatsoever".

    "in almost all the big games, the so-called boss characters are all beginning to be pretty much the same: big, creepy monsters."

    Apart from the ones which are big, creepy robots. Or large, tough fighters. Or large numbers of smaller weaker units working together, or...

    Actually, John, they're just tougher challenges and moments of heightened tension, and it so happens that often equates to "bigger and creepier". But not always.

    "If you want to see... how inane this is... rent... Starship Troopers... It's essentially a video game turned
  • by failedlogic (627314) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:02AM (#12382907)
    Can someone predict when John Dvorak will be out of his job? Hopefully it will be before Doom 4's release.
  • by Mr. Cancelled (572486) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:14AM (#12383025)
    But I more or less agree with Mr. Dvorak. I still remember staying up all night playing Doom 1 when it came out, thinking it was the coolest, and most immersive game I'd ever played. And it was at the time.

    But after getting all the way through the game, playing it at different difficulty levels didn't interest me too much. Same old levels, with a bit more speed, and a few more creatures... Playing multi-player online was also interesting for a little while, but it too got boring fast (this was admittedly before todays technologies, wherein you can talk and interact with the other players more fluidly).

    I was all geeked about Doom2 when it came out, but after playing it awhile, I quickly got bored with it. New graphics and a new(er) storyline didn't make up for the fact that the game looked and felt like Doom 1.2.

    Other FPS games also felt the same to me. Half Life 1 has got great graphics, and a rather involved plot, but other than this, it feels like every other FPS out there, to me at least. Half Life made me think a bit more, as opposed to the hack and slash mentality of the aforementioned Doom series, but it didn't really draw me into the game.

    For the record, I've never played Half Life 2 - The whole Steam thing turned me off... I don't think I should have to be connected to the Internet just to play a game myself (non-multi player), and the horror stories of Steams reliability made it something I've avoided ever since.

    Long story short, all FPS games have similar controls, similar graphics - They obviously use different graphics, but nothing is spectacularly different in the implementation of the graphics. You're still walking along, with a bobbing hand, or weapon in front of you.

    Plus, as these games have tried to get more realistic, the key combinations of them have gotten so out of hand. There just has to be a better way of handling all of the complexities of a 3-D game, without adding 50+ key combinations to do things. No, I don't have a solution to the problem, but neither do I like having to either memorize so much information just to play the game.

    Speaking of that bobbing hand/weapon which FPS games always seem to have, some of the implementations of this have gotten so out of hand that it gives me motion sickness just to play the damn things. Although it's not a great game, a good example of this is the South Park FPS - I played this for 5 minutes, watching the bobbing hand, holding a snowball, and felt like I was going to throw up!

    How game developers came to the conclusion that there has to be some viewable, hand-related element on screen at all times is beyond me. For instance, using the South Park game as an example, how many of us really hold our hands out in front of us when having a snowball fight? We also don't hold our weapons outstretched at all times, but in these games we do! It all seems to detract from that feeling of realism for me, and when they make these items move as we walk, it just throws the whole "look" of the game off. Yes, I can understand seeing the barrel of a rifle, if I'm carrying one, as it'll stick out in front of me, but why all weapons have to be handled this way is beyond me.

    There have been other variations on the FPS themes, and one of the more impressive of these is the Quake tournaments, but even these get old for me fast.

    The games that keep me coming back the most are actually the Civilization line of games. No, it's not action packed, and sometimes it too can get boring, but the challenge, and the AI of the game keep me coming back for more again and again.

    I also can appreciate the online games, such as Everquest, or Ultima Online a bit more than the average FPS, simply because they're different, and feel more "immersive" to me, even if they're not photo quality, or 3-D. I also tend to return to Mame and SNES games (via an emulator) far more often than I do the FPS's.

    In fact, I think that the continued (and growing) interest in emulators, and ol
  • by SubtleNuance (184325) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:16AM (#12383041) Journal
    But once we get to photorealism, what is going to sustain growth?

    Movies have been photorealistic for 100 years. What has sustained them? Stories Creative stories.

    Games are moving to become immersive worlds -- first person Shooters/Adventures/Horrors/Mysteries/Dramas

    Gaming Tech *will arrive* at a photorealistic reporduction of the world (VR helmets are coming too...) and then, the game designers will be the scriptwriters/directors etc.

    In short, seperate the Medium (3D Tech) from the Content (story). Games are simple entertainment, and technology has enabled that entertainment to become less paired with the underlying technology.

    Pacman's game mechanics were a limit of technology. Fun game? yes, of course. But the tech has arrived (or is arriving) to liberate creative content to produce an immersive world in which to set a person to be entertained (ala movie theater), technology isnt as relevant at that point.

    Sure, people are going to want ever-increasingly-capable machines to get more-realistic worlds (more immerisve), but the fact that compelling content is being deliverd via the game-medium is the point.
  • by superultra (670002) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:19AM (#12383081) Homepage
    "Hey you stupid kids, get off my lawn!"
  • This just in! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MaestroSartori (146297) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:31AM (#12383241) Homepage
    Modern Gaming Industry Trashes Dvorak

    He's a dick!

    But seriously, speaking as a game programmer (just made unemployed by liquidating employer, cheers guys), he's probably correct to an extent.

    Games rarely undergo really fundamental shifts in how they work. It's fairly easy to trace paths of evolution in fairly small obvious steps concept-wise from Space Invaders (shoot bad guys on a single screen) through Operation Wolf et al (shoot bad guys from a first person non-interactive scrolling view) to Doom (shoot bad guys from a first-person interactive view) to Half-Life 2 (shoot bad guys from a first-person interactive view when Steam will let you connect). You get the odd new genre-busting title, or one which suddenly kicks a genre into popularity (e.g. Wolfenstein 3D was pretty popular, but Doom reached a whole new level of infamy among the non gaming populace).

    I guess I just don't see how it can necessarily be a bad thing that most of the big companies don't go reaching for the genre-buster every time, or even some of the time. I remember when EA first brought out John Madden on the Megadrive/Genesis, it was pretty ground-breaking stuff, same with the first FIFA soccer games. Now they mostly just change the player names every year, and make a metric assload of cash out of it. By contrast, you get a company like my previous employers, who try for big original IP concepts with every game, then crash and burn because no-one will publish them (and in our case the managers seem to have no clue about business, but I digress).

    I'd love to work on games which revolutionise gaming every year or two. I'd also quite enjoy actually having a job, where I get paid, can buy a house and car and so forth without the spectre of unemployment hanging over me literally every day, which is what happens at smaller game studios unless they're very very fortunate.

    I'm now looking at moving to a different country, because there are very few games jobs left where I am, none of them are hiring. Perhaps I'll end up somewhere cool, but I'll settle for a regular paycheck even if it means making Generic TemplateGame 2006/7/8/...
  • by p3d0 (42270) on Friday April 29, 2005 @10:53AM (#12383499)
    Aside from the other criticisms posted already, I'd like to add that a sizeable part of the gaming target market is young teenagers with short memories. The quality of games for this market is about as important as the quality of boy bands.
  • by mcguyver (589810) on Friday April 29, 2005 @11:56AM (#12384247) Homepage
    I'm oooooold! And I'm not happy! And I don't like things now compared to the way they used to be. All this progress -- phooey! In my day, we didn't have multiplayer video games or francy-shmancy graphics. There was only one arcade in each state with one game called pong -- it was open only one hour a year. And you'd get in line, seventeen miles long, and the line became an angry mob of people -- fornicators and thieves, mutant children and circus freaks -- and you waited for years and by the time you got to the teller, you were senile and arthritic and you couldn't remember your own name. You were born, got in line, and ya died! And that's the way it was and we liked it!

    Life was a carnival! We entertained ourselves! We didn't need console games. In my day, there was only one game in town -- it was called "Stare at the sun!" ... That's right! You'd sit in the middle of an open field and stare up at the sun till your eyeballs burst into flames! And you thought, "Oh, no! Maybe I shouldn't've stared directly into the burning sun with my eyes wide open." But it was too late! Your head was on fire and people were roastin' chickens over it. ... And that's the way it was and we liked it!

    Progress?! Flobble-de-flee! In my day, when we were angry and frustrated, we just said, "Flobble-de-flee!" 'cause we were idiots and we didn't know what else to say! Just a bunch o' illiterate Cro-Magnons, waitin' in lines for our head to burst into flame and that's the way it was and we liked it! -- John C. Dvorak
  • Why He's Wrong (Score:3, Insightful)

    by umrgregg (192838) on Friday April 29, 2005 @12:11PM (#12384413) Homepage
    He said it himself in fact. There doesnt have to be new ideas for games. It's a generational recycling. There will always be a new crop of kids ready to play a prettier version of what was available 10 years ago. His kids don't mind playing the same thing that was around years ago because, well, they didn't play it.
  • by NitroWolf (72977) on Friday April 29, 2005 @12:41PM (#12384831)
    Gamers don't want photorealism. I'm not sure why people seem to think that we are working towards photorealism as the end goal of graphic gaming; we're not. We could have been there long ago taking a different path to that outcome, but it's been shown many times before that a game that looks real does not have the same appeal as a game that is slightly less real looking.

    We want to escape into a fantasy world, not into a photorealistic world that is undistinguisable from our own. I realize that in a photorealistic gaming world, we could still have non-real things, but the fact is that many studies have shown that the typical gamer prefers the slightly stylized images of a non-photorealistic world to that of a photorealistic one.

    Game developers have known this for years, and while we've been working towards better and better graphics, photorealism is not the direction we've been headed.

  • of practically everything... including the Internet (which he thought was pretty lame 13 years ago). I quit reading his articles about then and I'm amazed he still has any audience at all.
  • by Lord Kestrel (91395) on Friday April 29, 2005 @02:20PM (#12385967)
    I picked up a game a few weeks ago that I hadn't seen mentioned yet, and isn't really like anything else I've seen yet.

    Sid Meir's Pirates, released by Atari.

    Pirates I would say is a good mix of the adventure and sim genres. Most of it is an adventure game, with the sim part being the realistic wind and ship physics. Hell, it's almost a teaching game, as you'll learn more about sailing from playing this game than you thought possible.
  • by maxpublic (450413) on Friday April 29, 2005 @03:37PM (#12386886) Homepage
    Dvorak's sweeping generalizations are a load of crap, to be sure, but the game industry does an amazingly good job of falling flat on its face with most releases. Let's face it: the vast majority of games that hit the market aren't worth the bargain bin price, much less $50. Hell, most of them aren't worth playing even if they're *free*.

    I don't think the problem has anything to do with new ideas, since most of the 'old' ideas are so poorly implemented. I think the real problem with most of these games is that the designers are often programmers despite the fact that there's absolutely no correlation between being able to design a game and being able to translate the design into code. In my opinion most coders are terrible game designers - but try telling that to someone who's convinced that since he can code he must also be able to design, even though there's no logic whatsoever in that belief.

    There are exceptions, of course, but for every Fallout or Planescape: Torment or Thief there are dozens of games that're so awful they never should have seen the light of day. And even these games aren't "10's"; they're "6's" or "7's", but we're so used to being exposed to shit that when a 6 or a 7 comes around we go ballistic and proclaim the game to be one of the best things since sliced bread. In fact, they aren't anywhere close to a best effort, just markedly better than most of the trash on the market; and because of that we tend to put the game on a pedestal and ignore all of its faults, or the things that could've been done to improve it.

    As an example, take Morrowind. This game is not only buggier than 3-month-old road kill, but it also has lousy gameplay and doesn't even bother to try infusing any sort of balance into the experience. Even so it's head and shoulders above most of the RPGs out there, so players deliberately ignore the games faults (and even attack those who dare to point them out). But is this game anywhere close to the original Betrayal at Krondor in terms of story, or gameplay, or balance, or game system implementation? Nope, not at all. It does have much better graphics, but you'd expect that since BAK came more than a decade before Morrowind. For everything but graphics BAK takes Morrowind to town. And it' a pretty sad state of affairs when one of the games that defined CRPG is *still* one of the best CRPGs out there.

    What to do? Perhaps if companies were to hire some actual game designers to design the game, and the coders stuck to implementing the design, we'd get better games. For example, if we want good strategy or tactics games maybe companies should think about hiring the designers who used to make games at SPI or GDW (assuming they're even still alive). If we want a decent RPG then maybe the guy who made RuneQuest would be a good choice for that sort of game. And so on. Coders do what they do best - code - and game designers who've proven themselves design the games.

    Sounds like a decent plan to me. The result certainly couldn't be any worse than what we're getting right now.

    Max
  • by AWhistler (597388) on Friday April 29, 2005 @03:44PM (#12386955)
    Dvorak is not exaclty wrong here. Look at Doom...Doom 3 is just like Doom 2 with much better graphics and different weapons. Otherwise it's the same thing, and Doom 2 was much like Doom. Quake is like Doom. Quake 2 and 3 are like Doom.

    Age of Empires, Rise of Nations, Conquest, etc. are all the same. Zoo Tycoon, RollerCoaster tycoon (1, 2, 3), etc. are all the same. Diablo (1,2), the Sims (numerous), GTA (numerous), NFL, NHL, baseball.

    There are very few new games...most are updates of old game ideas. The only thing that is keeping the video games industry afloat is how impressive each generation of video cards becomes. Once that slows down, people are not going to keep buying rehashes of the same old games.

    And as for the movie industry...how many more Star Trek movies do you want to see? How many moe Star Wars movies? How many more Friday the 13th's, or I know what you did...still...and again. Even Pixar realized they were getting stale and hired new writers for the Incredibles.

    What the gaming industry needs is some new genre's for video games...something not already done and being milked for all they're worth.

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